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From The Socialist newspaper, 28 October 2020

Bristol jobs protest: We want 100% pay

Bristol Jobs Protest, Photo: Bristol Socialist Party

Bristol Jobs Protest, Photo: Bristol Socialist Party   (Click to enlarge)

Tom Baldwin, Bristol Socialist Party

Bristol and Gloucester Unite Community held a rally for jobs in the centre of Bristol to protest against mass unemployment on 24 October. Speeches caught the attention of shoppers - one of those who stopped described it as "the most sense he'd heard all day."

We encouraged people who weren't in work to join Unite Community, but we stand with the rest of the trade union movement in fighting to save jobs.

The rally was a week before the Tories were set to end the furlough scheme. This will see a further spike in job cuts.

Furloughed workers face an uncertain future. They have suffered a 20% pay cut for months.

From November, fewer workers will get support, just two thirds of their wages, but still face the same rent and bills. We called on the government to keep a job retention scheme, supporting workers with 100% of pay.

Speakers at the protest highlighted the hypocrisy of MPs denying health workers a pay rise despite being in line for a £3,300 raise themselves. MPs voted to leave kids hungry over Christmas, but the fancy food they eat in parliament is subsidised by the taxpayer.

These politicians don't care about us, they stand with the bosses who are making redundancies and using mass unemployment to attack pay and conditions for those still in work.

Capitalism is run by these bosses who demand more and more from workers, then throw us on the scrapheap without a second thought when we're no longer profitable for them.

The workers' movement must fight for decent jobs for all, and not let mass unemployment divide our class, blight our communities and scar the future of a generation.

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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
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In The Socialist 28 October 2020:


What we think

Tories' school meals outrage


Coronavirus News

Don't let Tories starve our kids

Tory 'Starve a Kid to Save a Quid' scheme

Boots launches £120, 12-minute Covid test

Under the microscope


Workplace News

Backing Hugo Pierre for Unison general secretary

Royal Mail: No more behind closed doors talks

Fight Leeds Labour council's massive cuts

Workplace news in brief


News

NHS England's £1bn winter shortfall: we need union action, not platitudes!

BAME Covid deaths due to capitalist inequality, confirms government

Mayor and government compete to attack London transport: fight for no cuts!

Grenfell watch: landlord's £800,000 saving


Food Standards

Food and a capitalist Brexit: No trust in Tory Deals!


International News

Nigeria protests shake regime

"We need a leadership that comes from the movement"

Bolivia elections: Crushing defeat for the right as MAS secures landslide victory

US presidential election


Campaigns

Online youth rally says: We won't pay with our futures

Birmingham: 'Refund our fees' protests

Solidarity with the movement in Nigeria

Evicted students can fight back and win

Waltham Forest Save Our Square:

Why I joined the Socialist Party - "I'm 15, and already I've lived through two global recessions and a pandemic"

Bristol jobs protest: We want 100% pay


Readers' Opinion

One rule for them, and another for us

Books that inspired me: Germinal

The Socialist Inbox


 

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